£13.5m The Hive leisure centre to open ahead of schedule


The Hive Leisure Centre in Ely, Cambridgeshire is set to open to the public on 14 May – two weeks ahead of schedule. (Article : Sports Management – by Tom Walker)

The £13.5m centre will include an eight-lane 25m swimming pool, a learner pool with moveable floor and a health club with a 120-station gym floor, two activity studios and a four-court sports hall.

Funded by East Cambridgeshire District Council (ECDC) – with the help of a £1.5m Lottery grant from Sport England – the centre was designed by Space&Place (formerly S&P Architects) and built by contractor Pellikaan with Mace acting as project manager. Roberts Limbrick were contractor designers on the project.

Corné Van Mook, project director at Pellikaan, said: “With the final design elements being nearly completed and construction works progressing well on site, we are in a good position to complete the project on time in spring 2018.

“We are working with reliable consultants and subcontractors to ensure a quality project will be delivered that everyone can and will be proud of for many years to come.”

Outdoor sports facilities include a 3G artificial grass pitch with externally accessible changing facilities.

The centre is part of the 6.5-acre “Leisure Village” project which includes a six-screen cinema and a number of restaurant units.

The new name of the leisure centre reflects the area’s Fenland heritage and the active nature of the building.

Councillor Richard Hobbs, of East Cambridgeshire District Council, said: “We are confident that the centre will be a hive of activity – a place that is full of people and where lots of activities take place at the same time.”

The project will meet the needs of the increasing population as part of the authority’s new local plan, with the existing Paradise Swimming Pool not able to meet the needs of the growing local community.

Paul Robertson, senior project manager at Mace said: “This is a project that has been talked about for many years and we are proud to be part of such a high-quality leisure centre which the people of Ely can enjoy.”

Construction started in March 2017 and with an opening date now confirmed two-weeks early the new facility will offer residents a greater range of opportunities to keep fit.

Charles Johnston, Sport England’s property director, said: “Tackling inactivity is a major priority of our new strategy which is why we are pleased to be able to support the development of Ely Leisure Centre.

“When complete, this exciting multi–sport facility will encourage more people to lead healthier and more active lifestyles.

“The Lottery funding we’ve been given will allow sport and physical activity to become an accessible option for even more people while those already active and playing sport will enjoy a better experience when the centre opens in 2018.”

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